Emile Heskey has backed Aston Villa’s reported pursuit of Sheffield United midfielder Sander Berge, telling HITC that the Norway international would be an excellent fit in Dean Smith’s squad.
You won’t need us to tell you that this all-action 23-year-old is a rather impressive footballer.
His Jupiler League winner’s medal, his impressive tally of European appearances and a not-insignificant £22 million price-tag – a fee which makes him the costliest player in Sheffield United’s history – is proof enough of Berge’s talents.
But there remains some uncertainty about exactly what Berge is – or what he will become.
A pillar of a man at 6ft 5ins, the former Genk ace provides a real physical presence in the heart of midfield, a powerhouse ball-winner who is as efficient as he is elegant.
Though Sheffield United fans may tell you that Berge actually does his best work in the final third, rather than when sitting in front of the defence.
An intelligent link-man, the 23-year-old can be almost impossible to stop when he starts motoring towards the penalty area, carrying the ball with a smooth elegance that belies his towering frame.
“I’ve seen a little bit of Sander Berge and he looks very technical. He drives with the ball as well,” says former Villa striker Heskey. “I couldn’t work out whether he’s a sitting midfielder, an eight or a ten. But he gets into certain areas and creates havoc.”
“He’s very, very good at picking passes. I could see him fitting at Villa.
“Where he would fit (in Dean Smith’s starting XI); I’m not sure. It will be interesting to see. He’s not old so he’d definitely be a good addition.
“Do they take Ross Barkley? Do they send him back and then take Berge? Yeah, I think it’s a good option.”
Aston Villa were linked with Berge before he moved to South Yorkshire 14 months ago.
And, according to EuroSport, the Midland giants could offer the 24-cap international a Premier League lifeline as Sheffield United hurtle towards the drop.